Larry and Arlie Hull have found a lot to keep them busy in their retirement. An initial investment in a PNG coffee plantation has, over the years, turned into a full time job for them. They still live in the US, but they spend about 5-6 months out of the year here in PNG at the Madan coffee and tea plantation, which they own and oversee.
The Hulls are from the NW and have been connected to many of our missionaries through the years from that area. They have been here helping out numerous times, as Larry is a retired orthopedic surgeon. Shortly after getting involved in the coffee plantation, trips from Kudjip to tour the plantation started occurring, but for one reason or another, usually work, I had been unable to go, until this weekend.
The Bennetts were going and invited the McCoys and I along, since we had never been. Arlie, Larry and one of their managers, Amos, gave the McCoys and I, a great tour of their plantation, explaining how everything works. I knew nothing about coffee, and don’t even drink it, but it was interesting to learn about.
The Hull’s have learned a number of things as they have gotten into this business, and we saw some of the effects of what they have learned. They shared with us about shading of trees, pruning of the trees, using compost, having a worm farm and how these have helped their production.
They are passionate about what they are doing, both at the plantation and in the surrounding community. They provide employment for the village people, who otherwise would have no employment, have built a health center for the nearby village, and they are doing literacy work among the villagers and more.
I now know a lot more about coffee production than I ever did before, now if I would only start to like coffee.